Tuesday, April 28, 2015

40 Reasons Why I Loved 'The is 40'...

I've talked a lot about marriage here.  I've been married for nearly 12 years now and so it's something I think a lot about.  Married with children, no less, and so when I see films that attempt to accurately portray what that means, I find myself picking at them, trying to find their kernels of truth amidst all the lavish 'Hollywood cliches' so that I can do exactly what I need to do; put myself there.  One film I never imagined that I'd be able to do that with was This is 40, but about halfway through the film I looked over at my wife and she said to me "this is so us" and I realized that This is 40, despite being an outlandish comedy that has so many layers of preposterous falling from every scene, is surprisingly and completely honest.

This is life, people!

I have to say, it shocked me to find out that this film has received a bad reputation as being not funny and boring, since I can't think of a time I've laughed so hard, but what shocks me even more is that people aren't singing the praises of a film that actually went there, said what we were all thinking, and did so in a way that feels so 'forgivably honest.

I mean, there are so many conversations here that I have been on the cuff of actually having with my wife and yet never have because, well, they feel unforgivable and yet when Paul Rudd and Leslie Mann spout off I looked at her and she looked and me and we knew; we just knew.

So, here are 40 reasons (in the order that I thought of them) that I absolutely, 100%, LOVED This is 40:

The whole opening scene...

This is the perfect summary of what this movie is going to be.  This whole conversation is just ridiculous and yet so accurate.  Like, married people are this comfortable and have these conversations and I love that his movie is going to allow the awkwardness to feel authentic.  Also, the way that the film's title pops up at that specific moment is GOLD.

Nicki Minaj meets Alice in Chains

First, I mean it's Nicki Minaj so, like, bonus points indeed...but then Paul Rudd puts on Alice in Chains and...dances to it!  "This just doesn't make people happy"...and then..."well we don't want one"!!!  Priceless!

Ripping this kid a new one...

This whole scene is amazing, from the insults to the way she blows in his face (MY GOD) to the whole "are you crying" to the whole menopause mention that triggers, "I'm pregnant you little bitch"...TEARS!!!  Mann nails this!

"He looked like Tom Petty, in a negative way..."

In fact, this whole scene!

I know, this is so out of order, but I'm seriously listing these as they come to me.  Like, this whole scene and the way they deflect everything is just incredible.  The principles face is incredible.  Like, the way they make McCarthy's character look completely insane, and the way she takes the bait, is just hilarious.  "He called me an iCunt"..."Bullshit bank commercial couple"..."my foot-bone"..."I'll chew through you"..."Bullshit hair"!


We might as well just get McCarthy out of the way now, since this whole scene is awesome.  First, the way that Pete defends Debbie is perfect.  The whole "that's my lovely sweet wife" line right after he's been, like, hating her in previous scenes, is so right on.  I bitch about my wife ALL THE TIME, but the minute someone else says shit I'm ready to knock them the fuck out.  That's not your right.  But McCarthy OWNS this scene.  "Turn around!"  "He hit my nipple!"  MY GOD!!!  "I have very high nipples!"  "That's a funny place to put a shoulder, on my BOOB!"

I want a weed cookie...

The fact that a spokesperson for Schwimmer had something to say about that joke...

"You can't use up a Jew Card..."

That part when Pete's dad asks for money for a cab...

The haunted cow...

OMG, this is so true.  I've seen this happen in my house all the time when my youngest daughter is trying to get my eldest daughters attention.  "Sadie, Sadie, Sadie"  Love it!


Shoot me now.  Shoot me now.  My seven year old already does this to me (minus the swear-words) so I'm pretty sure I'll be swallowing a bullet in a few years.

The absolute REALNESS of this moment...

Like, played for laughs in parts, but this is so real, so honest.  This is just the start of it, and I couldn't find the second half, which is really where it hit me..."You don't like me" UGH...like, that whole segment is so hard to watch it's so real but the beautiful way in which it's handled and moved on from is so great because these fights DO HAPPEN and they DON'T MEAN YOU HATE EACH OTHER!

Leslie Mann's face when she finds out she's pregnant...

"They look like pedophiles..."

The choreographed awesomeness of this dance scene...

"A quiet Cancer almost always has a huge penis..."

"What the fuck is left?"

That part where Pete admits to giving his daughter Tylenol when her ear was infected...

I completely related to this one.  My wife isn't as completely insane as the whole "no medicine ever" types, but we have friends who are so against any sort of medicine and I'm always saying "give me the pills" because, like, I want the pain gone NOW.

"That was our first 'Fuck You'..."

Crying over 'Lost'...

This scene cracks me up for two reasons.  First, I totally get where Sadie is coming from because I cry for days when shit happens in movies I connect with, but I totally get where Pete is coming from too because I have had this same conversation with my over-emotional seven year old all the time!  "We don't have time for this now!"  Like, for real.  Stop crying and put your clothes on, we have places to go.  We can talk about this stuff later!

"Oh, you wanted the record to sell..."

That part where Pete and Barry talk about their wives dying...

Because it's honest.

That part where Pete and Debbie talk about how they'd kill each other...

Because we all have.

That look Debbie has at the club that says, "This music sucks"...

The fact that the lovers weekend comes in the middle of the movie...

This was a big deal for me because it added to the reality of it all.  Weekend getaways to reestablish dwindling love happen all the time, and my wife and I have done that too...where you feel like you're disconnected and so you leave all your troubles behind and just escape, and for that weekend you are completely invested in only each other and everything is great and you connect and feel revitalized...but you have to come home to real life, and so having this diversion come in the middle and then slap us back to screaming kids, built up tension, financial headache and fighting felt so honest.

Awkward lunch dates...

I kind of love how all the lunch dates in this movie are so...awkward.  Debbie's lunch with her father, the birthday party lunch and then this hilarious lunch date with her drug addicted thief of an employee.

"And do what in the fort!?!?!"

This whole scene is amazing.  Like, so irrational and yet so brilliant in depicting just how hard it is to parent.  Like, you don't even know where to start and every time you do try and 'start' you're always starting from the wrong place.  This is Sadie's crowning moment though.  Like, her "nobody plays with sticks" line SLAYS ME!

The whole blowjob scene...

Like, for real!  I mean, when you have kids it's never safe just to have sex or whatever and no matter how safe you think it is, this always happens.  The screaming freak out coming from Pete and Debbie is just incredible.  Like, sometimes you just want to tell your kids to shut the fuck up and go away!

When Larry pretends to kill his kids...

"Barb doesn't give me a boner..."

The many different birth years Debbie uses...

Megan Fox's boobs...

This whole scene starts out so sexy and then gets so hilariously uncomfortable the more Debbie continues to touch her boobs...but like...who would want to stop?

The moment I realized that Chris O'Dowd was in this...


"Snitches wind up in ditches..."

LOL, I don't care how great of a parent you want to be, there are going to be moments when you just want everyone to let you be you and leave you alone and stop nagging and you WILL say things like this.  It's so wrong, horrifyingly wrong, but it happens.

That douchebag who opens his Range Rover door on Pete...

The fact that I will never get the image of Paul Rudd looking at his asshole with a mirror out of my mind, ever...

"Who takes a half hour to go to the bathroom?"

This whole conversation is hilarious.  The way that Debbie mentions that he missed the flip.  The way she asks to see if he pooped.  "I've been flushing as I go."  I'm just so glad that the wife and I don't talk while we poop.

The part where they spy on their daughter and are proud of her...

This one was special for me, because it's something that I'm sure will happen as my kids get older.  Like, I hated my parents spying on me, but in all honesty I think that good parents spy because good parents care and so when Pete and Debbie take away all of Sadie's electronic gadgets and start going through them and find out that she's been handling herself really well despite being teased by a boy at school, the pride they have in knowing that they have a good daughter even though she's annoying and emotional and hormonal is so touching.  

And that's it...that's 40!  And yes, there are more and I missed some and I even thought of some others but I'm keeping this to 40 because, well, it's kind of a theme thing.  If you haven't seen this, I hope you do, and if you have seen it...you better love it and if you don't then read all 40 of these reasons to CHANGE YOUR MIND!


  1. I'm glad this film spoke to you. I'm one of those that hated it. lol

  2. While I didn't LOVE This is 40, I didn't hate it! Really, I think it was just too long. But, there were certainly some great moments, and, as a LOST fanatic, I understand Sadie's struggle. What I enjoyed most was the youngest daughter and her antics. Gosh... she was a hoot!

    1. That haunted cow scene was great, and the way she kept mocking Sadie with electronics at the table while Sadie was freaking out about having them taken away...she was hilarious.

  3. By now, you already know I'm also married with children. There were lots of great moments that spoke to me because of this. Plus, Melissa McCarthy was on fire in this one. Still, I didn't love it. It does what a lot of Apatow movies do and drags on for far too long with the laughs coming less and less frequently as things progress. Trim about 30 minutes of extraneous subplots and you'd have a masterpiece. That said, this is a wonderful post that almost...almost makes me reconsider my position.

    1. I'll take an almost! I loved this, and I never felt it drag, but I was also a bottle deep in some red wine so I was feeling everything!

      The ONLY thing I would have removed was the Debbie's father subplot, which I didn't care for at all (thus it never appearing in my 40 reasons).

  4. I love the first paragraph of your post! I should check this movie out.

    1. I hope you check it out and love it!

  5. I fucking loved every minute of this movie. I AM Paul Rudd in this movie. It's amazing how right on Apatow is as far as the married man/married couple is concerned. Dude just gets it! Great post.

    1. YES!!!! I know exactly what you mean. I related so much to Rudd here...it just all felt so real and honest. So glad you got this one too!

    2. I'm with Kevin completely. I had a blast with this movie, too. I will never believe the hate.

      It's long, sure...but when it's good, who gives a shit?

    3. Exactly! I never really felt the length at all.

  6. I'm sorry but I thought it sucked. It just rambled on for too long and it felt very long as I think Judd Apatow needs a new editor to tell him what he should cut out and such. Plus, I didn't care for anything or anyone at all. I didn't laugh at a single thing in that film.

  7. I watched every scene...this is hilarious! I loved how the mom talked to that buck toothed kid. My friends have girls and they do act like this. Now if I acted like this I would not be writing right now because I would be dead-lol. I will have to rent this film

    1. LOL, that scene with the Tom Petty kid is so great because that is exactly what I want to do to any kid that makes my kid upset :-P

  8. I wasn't sure if I need to watch it, but after I saw that you can find 40 things that you love about This is 40 I'll give it a try.

    1. Cool! Hope you wind up liking it :-D

  9. YES! YES! YES! This movie was hilarious and quite touching. I think it wanders a bit, so I wouldn't quite give it an A (I'd go with a strong A-), but I LOVED it!

    And McCarthy was awesome! I can't stop watching the principal's office bloopers! :)

    1. The only aspect of this film I wish had been taken out was Debbie's dad...it just felt tacked on to add a layer that didn't need to be present.

      LOL, McCarthy OWNS her scenes!